A view from the back

What it’s like to be an outrider for the Tour de Yorkshire

14 May 2019

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The Tour de Yorkshire may be gone for another year but the memories are still strong for one man. 

He is Stuart Farquharson, one of the Humberside Police outriders that accompanied the TdY throughout the event.

We asked Stuart about the 2019 Tour, he said, “This was my fourth consecutive Tour de Yorkshire cycle race working as a police escort motorcyclist.

“The Tour is a brilliant event, you get to see some beautiful scenery around Yorkshire and get to meet lots of interesting people on the routes.

“The crowds are fantastic, this year turning out in their tens of thousands despite the terrible weather.

“Everyone we met was impressed with the police bikes and everyone wanted to give us a high-five or have their picture taken with us.

“From the comments we get from the crowds, it seems that the police bikes are as much a part of the whole spectacle as the race itself.

“On the down side, this year the weather was terrible, we had all four seasons in one day on Stage 3 (Bridlington to Scarborough) including snow, hail, strong winds, some sunshine and it was bitterly cold.

“The torrential rain on the Thursday, the first day of the Tour, which was mainly in the East Riding was the wettest weather I’ve worked in as a motorcyclist for a long time and it took over a day to fully dry out!

“What I love most about this type of event is the chance to engage with the public.

“The TdY is definitely one of the highlights of my police career.

“I’m now one of only three sergeants in the country trained to carry out the role of a cycle race supervision bike.

“This year, I was tasked with looking after the back of the race which is a real challenge when the race splits up and you have to make sure the cyclists and the public are kept safe while maintaining the integrity of the race.

“The police motorcyclists are volunteers from all over the country who mostly give up their days off to work on the Tour de Yorkshire, most keep coming back year after year because it’s such a fantastic event. Without them, the event wouldn’t be possible.

“The event organisers pay for the police escort, it’s a major sporting event with world class athletes that generates millions of pounds for the local economies.

“I’ll definitely be volunteering to work on the UCI World Championships in September!”

The 2019 Tour de Yorkshire took place on 2-5 May 2019.

The UCI 2019 Road World Championships will be held in Yorkshire 21-29 September. The East Riding will be hosting the Yorkshire 2019 Para-Cycling International race on Saturday 21 September.  The race begins in Beverley and ends in Harrogate.

For more information about the UCI World Championships follow the link: https://worlds.yorkshire.com/